Thursday, April 17, 2003

Hearts and Minds

It's from well-known Saddam mouthpiece the New York Times, so take it with a grain of salt of course.

We will kill them all one day, Rumsfeld and every one of them," she said, referring to Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. "Look at what they have done to my library."

Like many residents of Baghdad, Ms. Khedairy has now spun any number of conspiracy theories about the intentions of the Americans. She is convinced, for instance, that the bombing of her house, the ransacking of her cultural center and the looting of the national museum are evidence of an American plan to deface Iraq's culture and carry its treasures out of the country. This, from a graduate of London University, a professor who taught the literature of Britain and France.

Such theories are rampant even among the city's educated elite. Today, for instance, the chief doctor at one of the Baghdad's larger hospitals spoke about the presumed designs of the Americans on the Iraqi nation.

"Tell me," said the doctor, who asked that he not be identified, "Why do the American troops allow the looting? These people are cowards, the looters. All the soldiers have to do is fire one shot, and the looters will go away. They are cowards. And the Americans do not do this. Why?"